And we’re back to talking about Naked Lunch, perhaps the most uncomfortable, steaming pile of dog poo novel I’ve ever read.
With hesitation, I want to give you an idea of what I’m talking about when I say this book is incredibly difficult to read.
It’s one thing for me to say that, but it’s another thing for you to read some of it yourself. Instead of block quoting the passage below, like usual, and inviting all sorts of creepo internet traffic, I thought I’d simply take a photo of the passage.
Here it is. Start from the top to get the full sicko affect, and proceed with extreme caution. Read more
It’s happened to all of us.
A novel makes a “best of” list, maybe like Time Magazine’s—the critics love it—some of our friends say it’s great and some online reviews say it’s a good read.
Then we start reading the novel, and we’re like, Um, I don’t get it. But there’s something in the back of our mind saying, I’m supposed to like this novel! What am I missing?
I’m there right now. In reading Naked Lunch, I might have met my match, and I’m not sure what to do. Read more
So I wasn’t crazy about the opening paragraph in Housekeeping, as I explained recently.
But as I mentioned in that same post, Marilynne Robinson’s writing style is much less choppy, much more poetic, throughout the rest of the book.
Almost all the characters in Housekeeping have a great sense of loneliness and longing. It’s a melancholy novel.
Here’s one of the more beautifully written, poetic passages from the novel: Read more
Y’all know I’m big on opening sentences. The first page, the first chapter, of a novel really sets the tone.
So, when I came across this doozy at the beginning of Housekeeping, I must admit that my eyes started to cross. Read more
A House for Mr. Biswas is full of beautiful passages.
But this one might be the best: Read more
Yeah, I’m not a big fan of V.S. Naipaul, the person. But, man, can that dude write.
The poetic nature of his writing reminds me a little of Fitzgerald. Here’s another beautiful passage from A House for Mr. Biswas: Read more
I’ve mentioned before, specifically in this post, about V.S. Naipaul’s misogynistic reputation.
Now, granted, A House for Mr. Biswas is my first experience reading Naipaul’s work, so I’m hardly an expert on him. But some of his quotes in the past about women have been telling, especially for a Nobel Prize winner. Read them here.
I’d be lying if I said his views on those subjects hadn’t been in the back of my mind while reading this novel. So, when I came to the following passage, I probably raised an eyebrow (or two). This passage is describing how Mr. Biswas is adjusting to having moved to a new village with his fairly new wife. Read more